Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7 Review
While the DMC-GX7 has an impressive set of specs, it's not as much as a movie powerhouse as some other interchangeable lens cameras. This probably makes sense from the company's point of view - it already offers the GH3 for would-be videographers, so doesn't include the full range of frame rates and compressions options that camera gets.
What you do get is 1080/60p and 24p resolutions, with bit rates of up to 28Mbps, using the AVCHD codec (MPEG-4 is also available). You can adjust the shutter speed and/or aperture, as well as the mic level. Unlike many other mirrorless cameras, you can use focus peaking while you're recording a movie. The same 'tone curve' shadow/highlight adjustment tool is available, and you can apply the same special effects that are available for stills. Two other nice features are an auto wind-cut filter and the ability to 'split' movies (so you can remove unwanted footage).
|AVCHD resolution, frame and bit rates||
1920x1080 (60p/50p): 28Mbps
|MP4 (H.264) resolution, frame and bit rates|| 1920x1080 (60p): 28Mbps
1920x1080 (30p/25p): 20Mbps
1280x720 (30p/25p): 10Mbps
640x480 (30p/25p): 4Mbps
|Audio||AVCHD: Dolby Digital 2-channel; MP4: AAC 2-channel|
|File Formats||AVCHD, MP4|
Now, the bad news. The highly touted in-body stabilizer cannot be used while recording video. And, there's neither a microphone port nor a headphone socket.
Below are three sample videos, all taken at the 1080/60p resolution, to show what the GX7 can do.
We were very pleased with the GX7's video quality. As you'd expect from a camera that records 60p video, motion is smooth. The camera captures the amount of detail that one would expect at Full HD resolution, though moiré will appear at times. Sound quality is good, and the adjustable audio levels allow you to fine-tune things (though it's a shame there's no support for an external mic). The auto wind cut filter's performance is typical of camera's we've handled - it helps, but not by a whole lot.
This first example of some cool fountains in Bremerton, WA illustrates the smooth 60p output from the GX7. The video has good sharpness, with no awkward artifacts.
|1920x1080 60p 28Mbps, MTS, 9 secs, 28.5 MB Click here to download original file|
Next up is a quick video of an approaching streetcar. There's not much to say other than that there's no obvious rolling shutter and that the moving train illustrates the fluidity of 60p.
|1920x1080 60p 28Mbps, MTS, 8 secs, 29.2 MB Click here to download original file|
Our final video pans across Lake Union, in search of rolling shutter. While you will encounter some rolling shutter, it's no worse than its peers. The GX7's auto wind cut filter has reduced, but not eliminated, the wind noise on this breezy day.
|1920x1080 60p 28Mbps, MTS, 12 secs, 41.7 MB Click here to download original file|